Headlines: April 16th, 2009

Local people have been given a month to put forward their views on a list of potential sites for new nuclear power stations. The locations have been named by the Department of Energy and Climate Change after vetting a series of applications to ensure they were credible and that the sites could be operational by 2025.

Members of the public now have a month to comment before the nuclear planning consultation begins later this year. Five of the sites, Hartlepool, Heysham, Dungeness, Sizewell and Hinkley Point have been nominated by EDF Energy, and two, Kirksanton and Braystones have been put forward by RWE, which has also made a joint proposal with NDA for the Wylfa Peninsula. NDA has also proposed power stations at Bradwell and Sellafield and with EON has nominated a site at Oldbury.

After the month’s consultation period views put forward by the public will be used with advice from regulators and other specialists when the sites are judged to decide which are potentially suitable for inclusion in the draft National Policy Statement on nuclear power. It will be published later this year as part of the new system introduced under the Planning Act 2008.

The Energy and Climate Change Secretary, Ed Miliband, said there would be more opportunities for people to make their views heard. “Later this year we will be running a consultation on the draft list of sites, so people will have further opportunities to have their say,” he said.